I’m humbled and excited to finally be getting to write this piece about Alana. She’s not just an author to me. She’s a boot in my ass when I really need it and a really amazing friend.
I could go on for days with stories of experiences we have shared. from sitting head to head at the table and writing through walks through an alligator habitat to snap author photos.
When I lived closer, we tried to get together monthly for Chinese food and book talk. We have both come a very long way and I don’t think either of us would have made it to where we are without the other. I know for sure I wouldn’t have made it without her.
Caring about others is deep in her DNA. She’s been a nurse for 25+ years. On top of that, she’s an advocate and activist for change in everything from domestic violence to #kidslivesmatter and #onechildistoomany. She’s a mom to some pretty great kids, and a grandmom to the most adorable little girl ever. She still makes time to write on top of it.
Alana’s books changed my perspective on a lot of things, and that in turn has changed my life. They are non-fiction (with the exception of Webs, which is a fantastic and powerful story too!) and they have serious life changing properties that readers could find extremely helpful.
I’m not a real religious person and I didn’t believe that I struggled with co-dependency. but I really didn’t read the books with that frame of mind. I read them as someone needing something to change in my life and it just wasn’t happening no matter what I did. I didn’t suddenly find God while reading them, but I did find me.
Alana’s books helped me figure out that something that needed changing was me, and gave it gave me the confidence and belief in myself to make it happen. That all by itself is awe-inspiring and priceless.
To find that she’s been through some shit and come out on the other side is only one side of the coin. Her writing isn’t about telling her story, it’s about helping others rewrite their own.
I was around when she wrote Webs and I can tell you, it was her deepest desire to help women in tough situations find the strength and support that they need to breakaway. While the story is, well, a story, the context of it is intense and powerful.
That is Alana. Intense and powerful, even in the times that she doesn’t see, think, or feel it. I call her dynamite in a small package. She thinks its because she smaller than me and has a vibrant personality, but in all honesty, it has absolutely nothing to do with her stature or personality.
It’s her ability to inspire others without even trying. It’s her caring about others, especially those she’s never met but knows are suffering and struggling to survive. She wants the change, and finds even the smallest ways to help. It doesn’t seem like that big of a deal to her. It’s just what you do. This makes Alana tremendously deserving of the spotlight, in my opinion.
She’s extremely friendly, outgoing, and quite busy but is always happy to interact with new people.